Bhubaneswar, May 24 (IANS) The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is set to improve its Lok Sabha performance by penetrating into the Biju Janata Dal (BJD) bastion in Odisha.
The BJP appeared to achieve major gains in the Lok Sabha polls with its candidates leading in eight of the 21 Lok Sabha constituencies in Odisha, while the BJD was leading in 13 seats.
In 2014, the BJP had won just one seat while the ruling BJD had walked away with 20 seats in Odisha.
The latest trend showed that BJP candidates were leading in Balasore, Bargarh, Bhubaneswar, Balangir, Kalahandi, Sundargarh, Sambalpur and Puri.
Even though the regional party successfully held its ground in the Assembly elections — it is set to return to power in the state for a fifth consecutive term — the BJP witnessed a rise in vote percentage in both the Lok Sabha and Assembly elections, which were held simultaneously.
However, split voting was also witnessed as more votes were polled in favour of the saffron party in the Lok Sabha polls as against the Assembly elections.
The BJP secured 38.26 per cent of the votes polled in the Lok Sabha, a rise of 16.49 per cent from 21.80 per cent in 2014. On the other hand, BJD’s vote share has slightly dropped from 44.77 per cent in 2014 to 42.89 per cent this elections.
In the Assembly segments, BJP got 32.5 per cent votes while the BJD secured 44.65 per cent, resulting in massive decrease in the seat share of the saffron party in the state.
Out of the 146 Assembly seats in Odisha, the BJD has already emerged victorious in six seats while it was leading in 107 Assembly constituencies.
The saffron party was leading in 22 seats in the Assembly elections, becoming the second largest party in the state.
The Congress has been relegated to the third position as it took lead in 8 seats while the other parties were ahead in two Assembly segments.